Cuisine, Travel Guide

The cuisine resemblance between Vietnamese and Southeast Asian nations


Many of my friends decide to trot around the whole of Southeast Asia at the same time. Vietnam, Thailand, and Cambodia are usually picked as must-visit cities in the area while Singapore is a transit spot to either arrive or depart. While in this S-shaped country, they really fancy signing up for different night Vietnam culinary tours, and hence from there, a slight comparison about the cuisine system amongst Vietnam and the rest of ASEAN nations have been put on the scale. Here are the five most iconic dishes and their amazing resemblance between Vietnam and other Southeast Asian countries.


Asian cuisine

Coconut Tapioca Pudding

Widely named as “Súp Nước Dừa Bột Báng” by the natives, this Vietnamese cuisine is usually cooked with the main ingredient is banana or taro. Diners usually pick it as a sweet dessert or simple a tasty snack when school is at its break. Both hot and cold coconut tapioca pudding could be served. On the top of the plate, smashed peanuts or sometimes roasted sesame are scattered. Apart from Vietnam, the rest of Southeast Asia could possibly serve this sweet pudding as well.


Coconut Tapioca Pudding


This Indian-influenced creation plays an extremely essential part in the gastronomy history of ASEAN countries. Imported from India through trading dating back to over 300 years ago, Curry was then adapted and adjusted to fit the local taste of native citizens in each country.


Vietnamese chicken curry

The savor itself hence becomes highly diversified, which can range from sweetness in Vietnam, spiciness in Thailand and even gets torridly hot in strong Indian-influenced localities such as Malaysia or Indonesia. When in a Vietnam food tour, you would pretty much get to consume Curry with hot crunchy bread, while steamed rice is popularly used as a common side dish in Malaysia or Indonesia.


Curry and rice

Mango Salad/ Young Papaya Salad

This form of salad goes hand in hand with the childhood of almost every single Vietnamese during their young school years. Apart from Vietnam, mango and young papaya salad are usually found in front of a school entrance in form of a street vendor in Thailand, Cambodia or Laos. Having a little plate of salad in your palm, you would spot out small sliced mango or young papaya mixed so well with lime juice and sweet cooked fish sauce. Atop lie roasted peanuts, dried shrimp, beef liver, jerky and sometimes crunchy rice crackers.


Mango salad


Young papaya salad

Rice Noodle Soup – Phở/ Hủ Tiếu/ Kway Tiao

Hot soup using strands of rice noodles come in a wide range of cuisine that you can relate to Phở and Hủ Tiếu in Vietnam. While the Chinese communities in Singapore have come up with Kway Tiao (according to the Fujian group of China). Amongst these, the Vietnamese’s Phở seems to be the most famous name to be known. You can actually find various other editions in the area with the basic elements are boiled broth long-stewed with pork bones or beef bones, white rice noodles and toppings including torn chicken, stewed pork or braised beef for Phở. At some points, quail eggs, shrimps and squid could be additives. Side veggies include bean sprouts and lettuce.




Char Kway Tiao

Spring Rolls – Gỏi Cuốn

Spring Rolls seem to be one of the most requested and offered food in many Vietnam culinary tours. In Vietnam “Gỏi Cuốn” is the most basic term referred to a type of roll containing rice paper wrapped around a pack of meat, veggies and vermicelli noodles. At some regions in the country, Spring Rolls come in other popular names such as “Bánh Tráng Cuốn Thịt” or “Bánh Tráng Rau Thịt”. In Southeast Asia, Spring Rolls are made by combining shrimps, boiled pork, lettuce, fish mint, cucumber, hot mint and so on. These are all then wrapped inside a piece of wet rice paper and afterward dipped in cooked fish sauce, fermented fish paste or thick soy sauce.


Spring Rolls

If you still wondering if these are all true or not, why not giving it a try by joining in the culinary tours in Vietnam and other countries in Southeast Asia? Remember to have with you a local guide explaining everything inside out and make a comparison after that on your own.

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